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Camp Create coming in April

skinnyyellowWe are having Camp CREATE April 6 – 10, 2016!

Tickets will go on sale this Monday – November 16 at noon CST.

in 2014 i began dreaming and praying about what kind of place this camp could be…


– a place where women could enjoy a longer stay for a true break from the everyday routines.
– to create & feel confident that they were created for a purpose.
– to be reminded that they are God’s Masterpiece.
– to learn more about the plans God has for each of us.
– to explore WHY their art and gifts are important.
– to feel empowered as artists.
– to be in a beautiful space that sparks inspiration in every corner.
– to see that WHO they are..right now just as they are… matters and means something!
– to know that the desire to create is instilled in them by God and it’s REAL.
– to feel safe to share their dreams
– to be taken care of and pampered (women are always care giving… this is a time to be cared FOR)
– to grow spiritually, emotionally and creatively
– to uncover what their dreams might be if they don’t know
– to have a restful place to CREATE & PLAY
– to discover more about our identities in Christ.
– to be encouraged to SHINE everyday no matter their life circumstances

and God is continuing to make this happen!

CAMP CREATE is where for four wonderful days we will focus on the gifts of creativity, learning about God’s unique design for each of us and how God makes us artists.

even if you have never painted a painting or sculpted a pot… you are still an artist!

If you don’t consider yourself a “real artist” you will still fit perfectly at Camp.
all skill levels are welcome!  beginner to professional!
you have a purpose and goals and a heart that is worth fighting for!
God put a need to create inside us…there are endless ways that it can show itself…not just paint or pencils.
He made us in His image.
He filled our hearts with Dreams!


if you still don’t know what i am talking about you can read here about our past two camps:
Camp CREATE 2014
Camp CREATE 2015

they were the best weeks!!!
Our speaker this April will be Amber Haines!
Each day she will share in the morning & evening, challenging us with questions to answer in our quiet times and thoughts to consider while we are creating.
Amber’s book, Wild in the Hollow was my favorite read of the year!
You need to read this book!
She has a beautiful way with words and feelings that will bring you in and feel closer with jesus.
In her book, I loved how she saw the world, her home, her community and herself.
i am so thrilled to have time in small group setting with her.
and to get to create alongside her and YOU!

ladies… i am SO STOKED about AMBER!!! (just wanted to be sure you were sure!!)

Our Art Instructors will be Jeanne Oliver, Laura Kelley and ME!
we will teach skills and techniques that are unique to each of our giftings.
our days at camp are full of creating art together that is centered in our joy of using our hands to MAKE stuff!
our time is very free flowing and open ended… it is seriously FABULOUS.

i am so excited to get to create with Jeanne & Laura!
i hope you are too!
Kimberlee Jost is in charge of all the meals at Camp.
she is so talented in preparing delicious food and making it look easy and effortless.
i am so happy to eat everything she cooks!
Kimberlee takes such joy in serving women that her meals are truly a gift to everyone.

and her cinnamon rolls are to die for!

here are all the details for April’s camp!



1. this is completely separate from Craft Weekend therefore the wait list is not part of this event.

2. there are only 11 spots available for CAMP CREATE… last year we sold out in ten minutes.

3. there will be installment plans available for registration.
-First payment of $475 will be the payment due on Monday November 16, 2015 through paypal in my shop.
-Second payment of $500 on January 18, 2016
-Final payment of $500 on February 22, 2016.
-OR if you want to pay the remaining amount after monday 11/16/15… you can do that as soon as you’d like.

4. airfare and travel is not included but we will take you to and from the airport on wednesday & sunday of camp.

5. registration will open on Monday November 16 at noon central time in my shop.

6. camp begins at 5:30 Pm on 4/6/16 and ends at 11AM on 4/10/16.

7. leave your questions in the comments and i will try my best to answer them.

Mary - Hi! What happens if we get in, but have to cancel? April is quite a ways away… anything can come up.

Erin Ussery - Ehrmergersh. I want to go to there.

amyjupin - DYING!
what an amazing time you have planned for those lucky ladies!!

Shelly Clark - I so wanna go again, and I so have a list of people who I adore and would wish they got to go to experience this unique, joyful time.

Cj - I would love to do this with my daughter is this appropriate for a 16-year-old?

Holly Sudduth - Can you purchase 2 tickets?

meg duerksen - Holly – You can! 😀

meg duerksen - CJ – Camp and Craft Weekend are both specifically for adult women to come and get a break from their children so we say 21 and over for age limit. Thanks for asking. 😀

meg duerksen - Hopefully you would not have to cancel but if it is absolutely necessary… You can cancel. There is a $150 cancelation fee. There are full instructions in the information part of the ticket sale.

Rhonda - How many ladies will share a room?

meg duerksen - Three or five or three in a room. But this house is VERY large. So even in the room with five it isn’t cramped. ☺️

Dionne White - Sounds like heaven on earth! Even the field trip! I’m going to leave this one in God’s hand if it is meant to be! My daughter will be having surgery so don’t know what 2016 is going to hold just yet. One day for sure! I just want to say Thank you for making something like this available!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lisa Moreland - What is the medium and theme of the art projects? How many sessions of art per day? Will Amber speak once, or throughout the weekend?

Lisa Moreland - Lisa – Eisenhower Airport does not show up on American Airlines. Is it Wichita Mid Continent Airport?

Lisa Moreland - I am taking the February online course with Jeanne. Are the April Craft House projects different from that online course?

meg duerksen - Yes. They recently changed the name to Eisenhower so I was worried Mid Continent wouldn’t show up. Ha!

meg duerksen - Lisa – Amber will speak twice each day! 😀 The creative workshops are all afternoon and there is even extra open time to continue creating if you want. We will have painting techniques and mixed media…art journaling and I leave room to throw in a new idea we may be excited about as camp gets closer. It’s really enjoyable creative time. ☺️

meg duerksen - Lisa – I would assume they are. You would need to email Jeane about that to be sure.

Alicia - Sorry – not Camp Create related at all!! Did you see this story? Thought of you and your chickens. Ha!

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a fall walk

kansas has such a beautiful fall season with the best temperatures.
but we know how soon it will change from the colorful leaves to everything dead and brown.
so we got outside this past weekend and we brought the dogs.
you’d have thought those dogs had NEVER been outside before?!
they were so happy!

of all the leaves, my favorite trees are always the red ones.

Stephanie - What a beautiful post! I miss fall….

Carrie - So pretty! I always love all your posts, but I especially love photo-heavy ones!

Becky Fouts - your photos are stunning!! I can’t quit looking at them, thank you!

Jennifer - I love your photos and was wondering what camera you use?

Julie - Such stunnig leaf colours, especially against that blue sky!!

sharon / - ohhhh mother nature! you win, again!!

Lynne - Hi,

Your dogs got a very special treat this weekend. Is one of your dogs a labordoodle? We have a labordoodle and Sadie would be so happy to have gotten that great walk you had. I was also happy to see you with your children as well!!!!

library momma - What camera did you shoot with? Nice!

Kendra - Such gorgeous photos!!

Mindy - Stunning photos of the fall leaves and such cute kids and dogs : )

Amy - Gorgeous colors!! Thanks for sharing!

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cookbooks for #cookallthethings

TWO food posts in one week?!
who am i?
i had better get some crafts going over here so i don’t confuse myself!

I’ve been cooking… and thinking about food… and wishing for new cookbooks to inspire me even more to keep this streak going!
i am pretty sure an evening at Barnes & Noble is in my future to check these out in person.
what if i even got to go on a date???
i know… don’t get crazy Meg.

The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Dinnertime
i mean… how beautiful is that cover?!
she’s amazing.
and all her dishes on the counter and in the background… all strategically placed… she’s an empire.
total rockstar.
remember her waaaay back in the beginning of blogs?
and now this.
dude… what she’s done is amazing.

The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook
i have only heard wonderful things about this girl.
so i am guessing this cookbook could be great… or maybe too hard foe me? i don’t know!
it feels fancy for sure.

Dinner: The Playbook: A 30-Day Plan for Mastering the Art of the Family Meal
ummm…. HOW DID SHE KNOW i needed a plan?!
this looks like it could save my dinner time issues.
and i have seen her previous book called Dinner: A Love Story: It all begins at the family table and love it.

i mean what a GREAT title right?
it’s true.
i want my family to know i love them and care.

i am pretty sure that One-Dish Wonders is the kind of cookbook i would USE.
like not just look through and comment on how pretty it all is.
this looks like real meals for a large family with a narrow view of “good food”.
casseroles forever!

Juli Bauer’s Paleo Cookbook

and then to swing ALLLLLL the way to the opposite of casseroles… Paleo.
i like her blog for paleo recipes so why wouldn’t i love her cookbook to have on my shelf?
these recipes i would assume would be mostly for the grown ups but maybe i could find some meals for everyone?

Against All Grain: Meals Made Simple
i am so curious about this.
the no grain eating… could i do it?
what about cake? or cinnamon rolls?
i guess it’s a moderation thing just like it would be no matter if you ate no grains or not.
i know that many people have allergies and that is why a lot of people eat grain free… but not every one.
so that is what i am curious about.
i bet her recipes are yummy and would make it less painful to transition to.


100 Days of Real Food: How We Did It, What We Learned, and 100 Easy, Wholesome Recipes Your Family Will Love
i wonder about this one?
this is what i wish i could say about my family’s eating.
“we eat real food.  everyday.”
hashtag food goalzzzz.

Soup of the Day sounds like one i would enjoy.
i reeeally like soup.
but doesn’t everyone? or are there people out there that can’t handle the texture of soup?
you know… there are people who hate smoothies because they are thick and cold… i bet there are people that feel similar things about soup.
i am NOT one of those people.
i have a memory of my parents getting together with their good friends on a saturday night and a few of them brought soup.  the others brought bread or salad.  and everyone brought wine.  :)

Food52 Baking
annie has really become a baking enthusiast and i want to encourage that every chance i get.
this book would probably make her very happy.


Cookie Love: More Than 60 Recipes for Turning the Ordinary into the Extraordinary

whatever that cookie is… I WANT IT!!!
this is probably going in the cart for someone for christmas.
not me… but someone who may make those cookies for me.


Hand Made Baking: Recipes to Warm the Heart
annie can’t get enough chocolate.
this book would win at our house.


so how was that for the most random list of cookbooks i am thinking about today?!
but that is how my brain works.
i want healthy real food.
i want cake.
i want an easy meal.
i want gourmet.
i want to be Ree Drummond.
i want Annie to do all the work.

of all the cookbooks we have… my favorite is probably the first PW cookbook The Pioneer Woman Cooks
what is your most favorite cookbook you own?
i need to know.
thanks in advance.

Michele - I love Pioneer Woman and have them all, I’m like you the first one is my favorite although the latest is very good I just haven’t got to look through all of it. I make her Cinnamon rolls with my daughter at Christmas for our neighbors and now after 3 years they look forward to them and are tickled when we show up with them.

Christie - LOVE LOVE LOVE 100 days of real food cookbook – it won’t disappoint and so much easy to read and understand information about our food at the beginning of the book.

Lindsey Barlow - Have you ever heard of “our best bites?” They have a blog, it their cookbooks are great, I use their recipes a lot around our house.

Jill Hinson - Anything by Ina Garten, she seems fancy but I like that most of her recipes are less than 10 ingredients.


Janel - A Forest Feast is an awesome, real food, simple ingridients cookbook. Erin’s blog is wonderful! One of my go to cookbooks.

I also love William Sonoma cookbooks. I have one from 5-6 yrs ago that gets used all fall/winter long…they have great recipes in general.

I definitely love all the paleo cookbooks…you can’t go wrong there at all..

Janna - You need “oh My Goodness Cookbook” by Ellen Halberg on amazon. It MIGHT only be available thru today as they plan to put them in bazaars and local stores here in WA state starting tonight; )

Kimberly - The smitten kitchen chocolate pudding pie is my go-to. Delish! Bet Annie could make it no problem! 😉 I don’t make the crust though– I do the Pillsbury crust.

Stephanie - I love my PW cookbooks–I have three. She just seems so real. Rich, but real. Lol.
My favorite cookbook of all time is Nourishing Traditions. It’s all about traditional food.

Lisa - I love Ree too, and Giada de Laurentis, all her recipes are amazing. I also love Smitten Kitchen, all of her recipes from her book that I have tried have been fantastic too, you should follow her Instagram, she posts yummy recipes everyday.

Jenn - I have three PW cookbooks, they are definitely favs of mine. However, I also love The Barefoot Contessa (Ina Garten). Her recipes are so delicious and generally pretty easy.

Lori - I love The Smitten Kitchen cookbook!

Emily - I have the Meals Made Simple book because my husband and I did a grain free nutrition challenge with some others at our gym. Everything we have made from it is delicious!! And really they are simple. Our favorite is the creamy dill salmon. My husband is not a fish eater but asks for this once a week!

Jackie O M - Forty some years and hundreds on cookbooks on my shelves? Just can’t pick one! Depends on the subject? Southern? John Martin Taylor’s Low Country Cooking. Chinese ~ Ruth Law’s Dim Sum ~ totally falling apart. Mexican? Diane Kennedy The Tortilla Book. Vegetables? Marian Morash The Victory Garden Cookbook. Life Changers at the Sidewalk House? Martha Stewart Entertaining and The Silver Palate Cookbook. On and on. Sarah Foster, Joanne Weir, Ina Garten, and Jacques Pepin’s Fast Cooking my Way are currently day to day resources. I am an addict. A user ~ of cookbooks!

Jill - Well…. I have to say that I LOVE my copy of the Betty Crocker Cookbook…. you know… the old one with the red and white checked cover. It’s my grandma’s copy and there are notes in her handwriting next to the recipes I remember eating when growing up. But, I do love The Pioneer Woman too. Question…. I am wondering if you cook with gas…. waffling on what kind of stove to get. If you do…. is it stainless under the burner grates? If so… is it hard to clean? HELP!!!

Traci - You have highlighted all of my favorite cookbooks above, plus some that I want to check out! Smitten Kitchen is not too fancy, and I mean that in the best possible way. Hers is probably my favorite. You should start with her website, there are new recipes there all the time. Happy cooking! :]

Lee Ann - Is it sad that I rarely buy cookbooks anymore? I just use the world wide web :) BUT….I do miss flipping through the pages. Maybe for Christmas I’ll have to get a new one. Who doesn’t love the Pioneer Woman? And “100 days of real food”? Good stuff. Against all grain – Makes me feel so good (I have Celiac so I can eat everything!).

And….I pulled up your blog because December is coming. I’ve really been laying off the sugar, but I’m so ready to have your mint brownies (gluten-free style). They will probably taste sooo sweet after not much sugar. Anyway – You have to re-read that post. So sweet. Annie said, “what dat mell?” :)

Deb Meyers - Jim Lahey’s pizza crust from “Dinner: A Love Story” has become the bridge I crossed to meet and love on my kid’s college friends. IT IS FAIL PROOF.

(And I would tell you to make Jenny’s Arugula/Ricotta pizza NOW, only I’m afraid you will post it on your blog and then all the world will realize I am not a culinary genius but only a truly enthusiastic copycat :)

Kimberlee Jost - I love this post. Like really LOVE.

Jessica Strait - Oh you’ve gotta know about Seriously Delish: for People who totally love food.
From Jessica Merchant. She’s amazing/awesome

link love:

and her blog (always fun and totally honest)

her blog and your blog are my two go websites!

KWolff - My favorite cookbook is one that my mother in law put together for me the first year I was part of the family. She did one for each of her three kids & their spouses. I pull that thing out on a regular basis for reminders on how to make old favorites. My second favorite is my Gooseberry Patch holiday book. I love to read the stories in there and many of the recipes are ones that I use each Christmas.

Kerrin - I love the Looney Spoons Collection by Janet and Greta Podleski It is actually three cookbooks in one. So many yummy recipes from soup to pasta to roasts to desserts. All of them are easy and most are quick.

Sandra K, - Hi Meg, My absolute favorite is Ina Garten, The Barefoot Contessa on Food Network. I love all her cookbooks but Barefoot Contessa ‘Family Style’ is my top pick. I also have learned so much from watching her show over the years.

I’ll also second the vote for the Our Best Bites blog and cookbooks. They are two moms who share fabulous recipes your family will eat. They’re delightful.

Thanks for the fun food posts – love your blog. 😊

Marcia at Organising Queen - My favourite cookbook is Pinterest :)

Laura in Sacto - Pioneer Woman, A Year of Holidays. LOVE IT!

Myra - I really like Danielle Walkers Meal Made Simple because of the ease of use. She has organized shopping lists ready for every week. I would just take that list and go to the store with out planning any meals out for the week. Whatever I couldn’t find at my store I would order from Amazon. It’s so simple!

Crissy - These are great! I have the Against All Grain cookbook and I like the recipes. If you don’t have a pantry stocked w/ a lot of the ingredients, it can feel like an investment. But, not having the same bloated feeling after a meal (like when we eat gluten) is nice. We aren’t gluten free… we’re w/ you on the moderation.

I love the Real Simple cookbook called Easy, Delicious Meals and Gwyneth Paltrow’s It’s All Good cookbook. I have a young kid so the Weelicious books are fun too. :)

Lillian - The original PW cookbook and Whitney Ingram’s The Family Flavor are the only two cookbooks I actually use. I have a whole shelf of them that has been slowly whittled down, but they’ve mostly become pipe dreams of Hingis I wish I’d actually make and my family would actually eat! Everything is online;)

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